Aren’t we lucky

It was 68 degrees outside when I headed out for a track workout this morning. I was positively giddy over this delightful gift of cool weather.

I was not so giddy about my attire. I’m still healing up some mean chafing so I don’t want to wear my standard shorts. I tried wearing capris for my run on Tuesday and was not happy. Way too hot. I needed something fitted to avoid chafe but still short enough so as to not overheat. Yesterday I dug around in my workout stash and unearthed a solution. I think I must have bought them for spin class about 5 years ago. I don’t believe I ever wore them. I think I’d remember something like this.

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Sorry, South Charlotte. I have no other choice. I have a training plan. I must run and the chafe must be appeased. Luckily, I run at 5am so I hope I didn’t visually scar too many folks. The front view is not that bad relative to the back view. The back view is..yikes. I’m figuring the back view could ellicit one of two responses:

a) I run faster so as to not give people too much time to really take in the sight.

b) Other people throw up their hands and quit and, voila!, I’ve finally got the ticket to winning an age group award!

All right, so my outfit nailed down and diet coke chugged, I headed to the track at the gym. I got there at 5:15 and it was a smidge too dark to read my garmin. Garmin reading is pretty important on track workouts for me. So I decided to do some warm up miles on the road.

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Got back to the track and got down to business. Four 800’s and they felt fantastic! My hip actually did not hurt at all during the 800’s. How weird is that? Slow, easy warm up = pain. Speed drills = no pain. Clearly, I am an Olympian and I’ve just been hiding in this fluffy, suburban mom get up.

My 800 times were 3:57, 3:55, 3:57 and 3:55. I’ve run a faster single 800 before but this was the most consistent set of times I’ve had. My last run was the fastest of the bunch. Usually I’ll have one or two fast while the other two are quite a bit slower. I think that’s progress?

Oh and I didn’t feel the need to vomit at all. I didn’t even really feel like I had to fight the urge to stop. Usually I really have to pep talk myself through at least the last two drills. In fact, instead of spending the time pleading with myself to keep going, I found myelf smiling at the other runners on the track and thinking,”Aren’t we lucky?” over and over again as I ran the speed drills.

Aren’t we lucky to have this perfect weather?

Aren’t we lucky to have this little chunk of quiet before our busy days?

Aren’t we lucky to have found an activity that drives us?

Aren’t we lucky to have strong, healthy, capable bodies?

I didn’t say any of this out loud because several other runners didn’t look like they wanted to hear my Pollyanna bullshit right then. I know better than that. But I still think we’d all have ultimately agreed on the fact they we were so lucky this morning.

I did a quick cool down lap and some stretching, during which I discovered this

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The track has had some rain and it appears I was lugging some wet sand through this workout. I bet I’d be maybe 30 seconds faster with clean shoes!

Driving home I reflected a bit on the past two years. Two years ago I, very reluctantly, took up running. And I had so many personal rules about it. No more than a half marathon, no running with people, no running without music, no trails and definitely no track! I’d meet other runners and they’d go on and on about trying all those things and I’d nod and smile while I blew them off. I held tight to those rules until this past 6 months (except the distance one, I gave that up a long time ago) and this morning I realized that I’ve tried and adored all those things. Trails and track were the things I avoided most ardently  and they are now my absolute favorite. Who’d have thunk?

Conversely, nobody told me to wear spandex shorts. That was all my own genuis idea. And, oh my heavens, the comfort. The 80’s are making sense all over again. Dang those were delightful. To wear. Still not making any claims on the appearance. Luckily I’m a  suburban South Carolina housewife so nobody is expecting any ground breaking fashion out of me.

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